YouTuber Spotlight: Toby Turner
Today I’m bringing you a post on one of my favourite YouTubers: Toby Turner, perhaps better known as Tobuscus. An independent producer of YouTube videos based in Los Angeles with hundreds of thousands of subscribers across three separate channels, Toby posts up to 5 separate videos daily. His best material frequently hits several million views shortly after release.
Toby is best known for a number of different video series, including advertisement parodies, music videos based on original songs, and “Literal” trailers. He is also recognized for his collaborations with other prolific YouTubers, including iJustine, Philip DeFranco and others.
His style is a bit hard to define: very little of his videos seem pre-written (actually, his TobyTurner vlog channel and TobyGames game commentary channel are entirely improvised). His main Tobuscus channel has the most subscribers and most overall views of his three accounts: 900,000 and 128,000,000 respectively, placing him in the top tier of YouTube contributors. This channel is where his Literal trailers and other scripted content is posted, along with a series called CuteWinFail, a viral video ranking show fuelled by audience participation.
I can’t really analyze what makes Toby’s videos fun, except that his sense of humour is random, irreverent and silly. Unlike the movies and TV shows I’ve talked about, YouTube videos like Toby’s are a bit too short to discuss in any kind of detail – either you’ll like it or you won’t, and hopefully this recommendation will help point you towards some great content on YouTube. I’ll talk about some of his best stuff to finish off this post, and then point you toward his channels.
My absolute favourite Toby Turner series is the “Literal” trailers. He takes trailers for movies and video games and writes lyrics for them based on what is literally happening in each shot of the trailer. He then sets the lyrics to either the music used in the trailer or finds a suitable track by another artist. The completed video includes the lyrics in subtitles, and they usually end up being absolutely hilarious. I’ll embed my favourite two Literal trailers below.
His game commentary channel “TobyGames” might first seem like any of the others on YouTube (Trust me, there are a LOT). What makes it fun to watch is that he’s generally terrible at the games he’s playing, and this leads to many in-game deaths or funny mishaps. It’s also accompanied by Toby’s audio commentary, which varies between him singing, screaming in fear, sobbing, pretending to vomit or chanting, “I’m dead, I’m dead, dead, dead. No…alive. Whew. Yep. Alive..No, I’m dead” .
His vlog channel TobyTurner is the most laid-back of all, where he records unedited video blogs on his phone of him walking around outside and telling the audience about his life (It’s more entertaining than it sounds). It’s on these “LazyVlogs” that he’s coined several of his most-used catchphrases, including “Intro of Darkness, then Redness, then Whiteness” (while he presses his finger to the camera lens to create a transition) or his favourite, a deeply-voiced “Audience?” (his way of addressing the viewers).
As I mentioned before, it’s a bit difficult to do Toby’s videos justice by writing about them, so again I’ll recommend you check out his channels (links below).
That does it for this post, but let me know if you’d like to see more articles like this one about the YouTubers I’m subscribed to. Feel free to send me your suggestions for who to check out next! Tomorrow, I’ll be talking about one of the tech trends I’m currently following, so stay tuned for that!
Toby Turner’s YouTube Channels: